Post-surgery reflections.

No matter how prepared you think you are….. you are not prepared for everything.

No one can explain to you that several days later you will be exhausted from the act of folding two pairs of pants and hanging up two t shirts, to the point where you need to lay down before you fall down.

No one mentions that the general anaesthetic is designed to literally freeze your bowels on the operating table, and that combined with the power of the pain meds to do the exact same thing, everything is working against your bodies natural elimination process. And hooeee that hurts. It hurts your stomach, your stitches, your arms and legs ache and your back feels like you suddenly aged 67 years overnight. (and spent each one of those years stooped over in a coal mine chipping away at a bloody rock)

So you’re stooped over, but trying to keep moving, one hand on your back, the other on your abdomen (gotta protect those stitches!) shuffling round the house, feeling older than your days, monitoring the pain, making sure you keep on top of the timing of the meds/ keeping the pain at 1-3/10, battling the breakthrough pain that you know will make you cry like a baby, slowly rifling through every pair of casual pants you own, assessing their waist height and the strength of the elastic to try and predict the potential level of torture, debating over the nana slippers versus the funky sneakers (because how far are you willing to lower your standard of dress…?) and despite this, despite ALL this, all you can think is: soon, I can get my life back.

I won’t be in agony every single month for 10-15 days, I won’t have to cancel social events and struggle at work, I won’t lose so much blood my haemoglobin will drop to critical levels and require a life saving transfusion or two, I won’t have cervical shock and my body begin to shut down, I can function like a normal person again.

I will be able to walk 100 metres without palpitations and the threat of passing out. I’ll be able to go to meetings without needing to rush to the bathroom. I’ll be able to wear the clothes I want. Go out to dinner with my partner. Have weekends where I can safely and comfortably leave the house.

The hardest thing about chronic illness is that you’re forced to make it look like everything is fine.

I’m officially a week into a minimum four week recovery period. Today was a bad day for pain and discomfort. But tomorrow may be a good day. We’ll see. ….just for now, I will maintain my mantra: “I’m okay. I’m okay. I’m okay”……….


Take my hand, sweet sister….

[Author: Catherine McInnes-Wright]

Take my hand, sweet sister. You are not alone on this dark night.
I know this life has brought you to your knees. I see the shadows of doubt and fear etched on your precious face. I see your strong shoulders bowing under the weight of the whole world’s pain. I see the dried blood on your soft hands from clawing your way out of all places you did not belong.
It is time to rise.
Come with me to the water’s edge and look into your own radiant eyes. For it is there you shall see your blazing truth: You are too beautiful to be hidden. You are too powerful to stay small. You are so much more than the life that contains you.
Set down your sword, sister. You are a warrior, but your power does not lie in weapons. Your true strength lies in the mysteries hidden beneath your sumptuous skin. It swells in your shining moon-belly, cascades over the mountains of your honeyed hips, and pulsates through your thunderstorm-heart.
Let us journey through the desolate lowlands of sorrow to the epic wall you built around that heart so long ago. See the wall now covered in the moss of sadness and the vine of regret. Allow yourself to take it down brick by brick with trembling hands.
Let your sacred tears cascade like a waterfall upon all the wounds that your own sword has inflicted. Listen as your heart beats stronger and more insistent with every tear drop, in perfect time with the rhythm of life: Love. Love. Love.
With a free heart, watch the land come alive again. First wild flowers will burst forth, and then whole jungles full of rainbow-feathered birds and roaring beasts. Do not be afraid, darling one. They are all here for you.
Travel to all the forgotten places. Dance naked beneath the shining starlight of your intuition. Rediscover the ancient mysteries drawn on the walls of your womb and the wisdom of the ever-changing scarlet tides of your blood. Step boldly into the long-suppressed fires of sacred anger, allowing yourself to be engulfed and transformed by the raging flames.
Tiptoe carefully into the darkest shadows of yourself to behold the savage dragons and the tender little girl they protect. See every muddy, bloody, wild part of yourself, and embrace it all. Your messiness is your magnificence. Your humanness is radiant beauty in motion. You are a powerful, magical creatress.
Know your lover deep in your heart. Feel their integrity, strength and courage, so that when you see them — for the first time or the hundredth — you may recognize their true divinity.
Remember the devotion of your sisters and the endless lifetimes we have gathered together. Let us always make circles and dance with Maiden Earth below us, the red tent holding us, and Grandmother Moon above.
Surrender to your own sacredness. Let your sword stay fallen and your walls continue to crumble. When the world brings you to your knees again, when you can barely see through the darkness, know this: You are love. It radiates through every cell of your being. Let it shine out onto everything and everyone you touch. And rise.


27 Life Changing Lessons from Ekhart Tolle

I stumbled across this post today, and it’s simply too important to be ignored. I’ve copied and pasted it below, and the link to the original post is here.


“People don’t realize that now is all there ever is; there is no past or future except as memory or anticipation in your mind.”

“…the past gives you an identity and the future holds the promise of salvation, of fulfillment in whatever form. Both are illusions.”

“Time isn’t precious at all, because it is an illusion. What you perceive as precious is not time but the one point that is out of time: the Now. That is precious indeed. The more you are focused on time—past and future—the more you miss the Now, the most precious thing there is.”

“Don’t let a mad world tell you that success is anything other than a successful present moment.”

“Most humans are never fully present in the now, because unconsciously they believe that the next moment must be more important than this one. But then you miss your whole life, which is never not now.”

“As soon as you honor the present moment, all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease. When you act out the present-moment awareness, whatever you do becomes imbued with a sense of quality, care, and love – even the most simple action.”


“Wherever you are, be there totally. If you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have three options: remove yourself from the situation, change it, or accept it totally. If you want to take responsibility for your life, you must choose one of those three options, and you must choose now. Then accept the consequences.”


“Acceptance looks like a passive state, but in reality it brings something entirely new into this world. That peace, a subtle energy vibration, is consciousness.”

“Accept – then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”

“Always say “yes” to the present moment. What could be more futile, more insane, than to create inner resistance to what already is? what could be more insane than to oppose life itself, which is now and always now? Surrender to what is. Say “yes” to life — and see how life suddenly starts working for you rather than against you.”


“Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having at the moment.”


“Life isn’t as serious as the mind makes it out to be.”


“Love is a state of Being. Your love is not outside; it is deep within you. You can never lose it, and it cannot leave you.”


“People tend to dwell more on negative things than on good things. So the mind then becomes obsessed with negative things, with judgments, guilt and anxiety produced by thoughts about the future and so on.”


“To complain is always nonacceptance of what is. It invariably carries an unconscious negative charge. When you complain, you make yourself into a victim. When you speak out, you are in your power. So change the situation by taking action or by speaking out if necessary or possible; leave the situation or accept it. All else is madness.”


“There is a fine balance between honoring the past and losing yourself in it. For example, you can acknowledge and learn from mistakes you made, and then move on and refocus on the now. It is called forgiving yourself.”


“Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on.”

“Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.” ~ Eckhart Tolle


“In today’s rush we all think too much, seek too much, want too much and forget about the joy of just Being.”


“Defining yourself through thought is limiting yourself.”

“Give up defining yourself – to yourself or to others. You won’t die. You will come to life. And don’t be concerned with how others define you. When they define you, they are limiting themselves, so it’s their problem. Whenever you interact with people, don’t be there primarily as a function or a role, but as the field of conscious Presence. You can only lose something that you have, but you cannot lose something that you are.”

“Once you have identified with some form of negativity, you do not want to let it go, and on a deeply unconscious level, you do not want positive change. It would threaten your identity as a depressed, angry or hard-done by person. You will then ignore, deny or sabotage the positive in your life. This is a common phenomenon. It is also insane.”


“On a deeper level you are already complete. When you realize that, there is a joyous energy behind what you do.”

“To be identified with your mind is to be trapped in time: the compulsion to live almost exclusively through memory and anticipation.”

“To know yourself as the Being underneath the thinker, the stillness underneath the mental noise, the love and joy underneath the pain, is freedom, salvation, enlightenment.”

“Boredom, anger, sadness, or fear are not ‘yours,’ not personal. They are conditions of the human mind. They come and go. Nothing that comes and goes is you.”

“The beginning of freedom is the realization that you are not “the thinker.” The moment you start watching the thinker, a higher level of consciousness becomes activated. You then begin to realize that there is a vast realm of intelligence beyond thought, that thought is only a tiny aspect of that intelligence. You also realize that all the things that truly matter – beauty, love, creativity, joy, inner peace – arise from beyond the mind. You begin to awaken.”


“A genuine relationship is one that is not dominated by the ego with its image-making and self-seeking. In a genuine relationship, there is an outward flow of open, alert attention toward the other person in which there is no wanting whatsoever.”


“To offer no resistance to life is to be in a state of grace, ease, and lightness. This state is then no longer dependent upon things being in a certain way, good or bad. It seems almost paradoxical, yet when your inner dependency on form is gone, the general conditions of your life, the outer forms, tend to improve greatly. Things, people, or conditions that you thought you needed for your happiness now come to you with no struggle or effort on your part, and you are free to enjoy and appreciate them – while they last. All those things, of course, will still pass away, cycles will come and go, but with dependency gone there is no fear of loss anymore. Life flows with ease.”

“What you react to in others, you strengthen in yourself.”

“Anything that you resent and strongly react to in another is also in you.”

“Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”


“Power over others is weakness disguised as strength.True power if within, and it is available to you now.”


“Every addiction arises from an unconscious refusal to face and move through your own pain. Every addiction starts with pain and ends with pain. Whatever the substance you are addicted to – alcohol, food, legal or illegal drugs, or a person – you are using something or somebody to cover up your pain.”


“Love is not selective, just as the light of the sun is not selective. It does not make one person special. It is not exclusive. Exclusivity is not the love of God but the “love” of ego. However, the intensity with which true love is felt can vary. There may be one person who reflects your love back to you more clearly and more intensely than others, and if that person feels the same toward you, it can be said that you are in a love relationship with him or her. The bond that connects you with that person is the same bond that connects you with the person sitting next to you on a bus, or with a bird, a tree, a flower. Only the degree of intensity with which it is felt differs.”


“Authentic human interactions become impossible when you lose yourself in a role.”

“Living up to an image that you have of yourself or that other people have of you is inauthentic living.”


“Man made God in his own image…”


“Don’t Seek Happiness. If you seek it, you won’t find it, because seeking is the antithesis of happiness.”

“Is there a difference between happiness and inner peace? Yes. Happiness depends on conditions being perceived as positive; inner peace does not.”


“For what you do to others, you do to yourself.”


“Any action is often better than no action, especially if you have been stuck in an unhappy situation for a long time. If it is a mistake, at least you learn something, in which case it’s no longer a mistake. If you remain stuck, you learn nothing.”


“If you get the inside right, the outside will fall into place. Primary reality is within; secondary reality without.”


“The mind is a superb instrument if used rightly. Used wrongly, however, it becomes very destructive. To put it more accurately, it is not so much that you use your mind wrongly — you usually don’t use it at all. It uses you. This is the disease. You believe that you are your mind. This is the delusion. The instrument has taken you over.”


“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose.”


“Humanity is now faced with a stark choice: Evolve or die. … If the structures of the human mind remain unchanged, we will always end up re-creating the same world, the same evils, the same dysfunction.”





Courage to live an authentic life..

People don’t usually wake up one day and suddenly decide they’re not happy with their lives… it’s a gradual thing.. it creeps up on you when you’re not paying attention. It gets down into the crevices of your heart, tucks itself into the secret parts of you that you no longer bother to pay attention to because you’re just so gosh darn busy with the perpetual motion of day to day life.

It often manifests itself in strange and unrelated ways:
– The ‘blah’ you feel when you wake up in the morning..
– How annoying slow people are in the supermarket or on the road..
– The way your ‘fuse’ gets shorter and shorter, or people just become harder and harder to be patient with..

And then you realise: it’s not them – it’s you.

There’s a brief feeling of falling when you realise you’re not excited about life anymore… it’s sort of like you’ve been falling the whole time but you’ve only just realised that the hard earth is fast approaching – and you scramble to open your parachute and then wonder if you even have one.

Because the process of change is a lot like realising you might not have a parachute.. and change can HURT. It’s scary stuff. You might lose friends, lovers, you might just lose yourself.

And the moment you realise you need to change? The ah-ha moment.. the epiphany.. the lightbulb going on above your head?

Its often a glimpse of joy that is so bright, that lifts you up and takes you by surprise and makes you feel alive – that brief moment where you realise that this is how you want to feel. 

There’s a lot of inner work that needs to be done at this point. If you want to capture that feeling again – you need to work out what floats your boat and pushes your buttons.. and you can’t base this around what other people are doing that looks cool, interesting or seems like what you should be doing to be happy. It’s got to come from you.

One of the best parts about your change journey is rediscovering your passions… focussing on the experiences and actions that make you feel alive again. Awake. Fully present and accounted for in your own life. Its a wonderful, truly magical time of discovery and energy.

I often encourage people to write these things down… keep a gratitude journal.. articulate what you are learning and experiencing and feeling – and do this just for you. (The process of writing is another step to manifestation after all)

At this point you are already changing… because you’ve decided that you can’t just go back to sleep now.. you know what you have been missing out on.

But the process of real change is tough. If you want to live a fully present, authentic life then you simply cannot keep doing the same things you’ve always done, you can’t even necessarily keep the same people in your life (particularly if they themselves don’t embrace change, or have any desire to be their best and happiest selves) and this is the hard part: letting go of the people and things you know, to allow space in your life for the unknown. To take the risk because you know that the brief moments of falling can actually feel like you are flying it’s all a matter of perspective. 

And sometimes you can actually hit the ground, knock the wind right out of you – lie there on your back, struggling to breathe and wonder how the heck you are going to be able to move again… or you can bounce. You can jump up, run over to the plane and head back up into the sky for your next adventure…..

Enjoying your own company..

2014 has been a year of change.. a year of contrasting highs and lows. I’m so proud of what I have accomplished, but I know that it’s meant a lot of change both in me as a person, and in my life.

The past couple of weeks I’ve spent a lot of time alone… remembering how it feels to be in my own company. Doing things like lots of walking, taking pictures, getting pedicures, full body massages, re-organising my closets, meditating, enjoying the feel of grass under my feet.. and eating by myself, being fully present in the moment, enjoying and savouring each bite.

I’m happy to report that I still enjoy my own company…

As human beings we crave contact with other people, we seek out others for companionship, to validate us, make us feel special, to avoid dealing with our own insecurities and to hide behind the noise of day to day interactions. When we’re not with others, we’re on social media platforms – we instagram, tweet, Facebook post and stalk, anything to avoid being alone. Alone physically, emotionally and alone with our thoughts.

What is so scary about our inner selves that we constantly avoid our own company?

Why do we buffer our experiences to avoid being alone?

Personally I’ve learned so much about myself in these past weeks. I’ve re-learned the beauty of silence, and spent time embracing my inner voice.. I’ve faced my fears (and still am) and worked out the things that are truly important to me. I feel like I still need to spend some time alone with myself.. and its almost like this sacred time will allow me to move to the next phase of my life. Whatever it may be…

I’m not afraid of what I’ve found when I look within.. and thats an incredibly empowering feeling. When you know yourself and you know your true passions, hopes, dreams and fears.. there is a mastery of self and the ability to live your life in the present moment. It’s not all roses and champagne.. theres a lot of gunk and detritus to work through.. but the end result is the ability to enjoy your own company, and that is a gift you deserve to give yourself.

There is a slight catch – you have to do the work .


Every day matters.

It’s so easy isn’t? Getting caught up in the rhythms, pressures, habits, routines and perpetual motion of our every day lives…

And then one day you wake up, you’re clear headed, you stretch, take a deep breath and look around you – and you think to yourself: “wow, most of the year has gone already… so what have I done for myself with this time?”

Because thats what happens when we aren’t conscious and present each day – life passes us by, half the time we’re so busy thinking about the past, or worrying about the future and things that haven’t even happened yet, that we don’t see, feel, hear, taste or experience what is unfolding in this present moment.

We’re in a constant state of either ‘previewing’ or ‘reviewing’ our lives, instead of experiencing and enjoying this present moment. (as my fabulous friends often say!)

Sometimes its good to imagine – to look ahead and to visualise the life and the experiences that we want – this is part of the manifestation process after all – but before we do that, and before we can start to change our lives to what we’ve always dreamed – we need to be able to STOP, BREATHE and BE PRESENT in this moment.

A great way to cultivate this awareness is through taking a moment each day to think about all the things you are grateful for, for example:

  • I am able to enjoy sleeping in a comfortable, warm bed, put a roof over my head, create a home that I appreciate coming back to each day.
  • I appreciate my mind, my intellect – that I am able to listen to others, appreciate their points of view and have the ability to keep learning.
  • I have a strong body that carries me throughout the day, eyes that allow me to see beauty and appreciate my surroundings, and ears that allow me to hear music in every day life.
  • I have the most amazing group of people in my life and they truly inspire me in their unique ways.


This type of process is like exercising a muscle – the more you consciously do it, the easier and more natural it becomes.
In time you start to see the world through a different lens – not ‘rose tinted hippy glasses‘ as some people would have you believe – but with a new appreciation and wonder for everyday things. You start to realise how much you’ve missed over the years reminiscing/ ruminating – previewing/ reviewing – instead of just being… you come to a place where you can truly appreciate the goodness in your life.

The funny thing about the power of the human brain – whatever we focus on increases. So if you see and appreciate the goodness in your life – this is what you experience and draw to you.


Why does every day matter?
Theres a very famous quote that tells us “what you do today is important, because you are exchanging a day of your life for it” and this is true no matter what sort of day you are having. Lets face it – we aren’t always going to have magical days where we find a pet unicorn, the barista sees us coming and has our favourite coffee ready to go, the lights are all green and the parking spot just outside the door suddenly appears…

In fact – some days are there to test us, to fray on our very last nerve – sometimes people are just rude, obstinate and aggressive – and there’s nothing we can do about how they choose to live their lives – but we can do everything about how we choose to live ours.


Exercise your positivity muscles – every day. 
When you climb into bed at night, do whatever you can to ensure you are in the right mental state to support and nourish you.

Even if you’ve had a sh*t day, holding on to that anger or worry only does you damage – and does nothing to change your situation.

Try writing down how you feel – letting the emotions out. If you can quieten your mind try meditating – or use a meditation app to guide you through if necessary. Escape into a book. Watch funny cat videos until your current state is laughter – you have the power to choose what you focus on. Use the force.


You have all the power in the world to change how you experience your life. 
And every day of your life is important – every day matters – because you have not only the ability, but the right to live the kind of life you want. It’s up to you.


Beauty: a delicious and wild tangent….

I saw this picture today and as ever, it set my mind off on wild delicious tangents… (Every mind should experience the joy of a wild delicious tangent!)

A few years ago we were all about asking that question “so if you had to lose one or the other, would you choose to lose your sight, or your hearing?” (Heck of a conversation changer, if you want to skip small talk and get on a wild delicious tangent, that’s an interesting place to start)

Of course no one ‘wants’ to lose any of their senses, and those that live that truth lead challenging lives indeed – the purpose of the question is to get people to think outside their day to day known experiences and to challenge their assumptions so they can perceive things that are important to them.

On one side: retain your hearing, lose your sight. These people were naturally very kinaesthetic (although not necessarily aware of this) they spoke not only of their love of music, birdsong, hearing the ocean, babies laughing etc… But that they could still feel the sun on their face – and imagine a clear blue sky. They could dip their fingers in cold clear river water, and feel the flow of the current – hearing the movement and seeing in their mind the water dancing over the rocks.

On the other side, retain your sight, lose your hearing. These were the artists, the writers, the painters. The people who felt an image did paint a thousand words, and that they would hear music when they looked at something beautiful.

But what is beauty?

This image is the kind of thing I love to share… In a world where we seem to be driven by a certain aesthetic, where a woman’s ‘worth’ still seems to hinge so deeply on her visual appeal, we need to ask ourself these kinds of questions.

We need to challenge the visual propaganda, ask ourselves often and loud what really matters to us, and let our minds wander off on delicious and wild tangents, so we can find what’s within the soul of us all.


Taking a break…

What a concept… for someone who took 5.5 years to take  ‘proper’ holiday (just because, rather than at Christmas) the concept of just stopping, literally not doing anything, or having anywhere to be, is just bizarre.

A few things I have noticed this week:

My phone isn’t important. OK, well to be honest, I had my phone in my handbag all weekend, on silent, and over the course of that time I ran out the battery, and couldn’t find the charger. And I didn’t even notice. I did have a few calls I needed to make, but I was so relaxed, so in the moment, enjoying my break and doing my thing that I forgot. And guess what? The world didn’t end.

I love reading. I guess I have mentioned this before, but the fact is I read 5 books over the weekend until now, and I am halfway through the 6th. Being transported into new worlds with every turn of the page is a kind of everyday magic. NB: The amount of books I have read may be a direct cause of completely forgetting my phone. 

I love feeling good. If I had tried to take some time out ten years ago, I would be spending my time doing VERY different things. (involving a large quantity of vino, no doubt) but this week has been made up of early nights and sleeping well (waking up without an alarm, letting my body tell me when I’m ready)  drinking a lot of herbal tea, yoga, Reiki, studying my herbalism course, and just generally doing awesome healthy stuff.

I’m not ready to commit to anything just yet. Symptomatic of 6 years in one place no doubt, but after one week of no commitments, I’ve realised that this is exactly what I need to be doing in this present moment. I’m doing exactly what I need to get myself wherever the heck I am going to end up. For a super-organised, methodical, slightly OCD (or rather OCT as my workmates told me!) this is a strange concept – and part of letting go, and being in the moment.

I am excited. And some days I’m not really sure what I am excited about – but I have laughter bubbling away just below the surface, a smile never far from my face, and a renewed sense of appreciation for the life I am living. I sat in the sun the other day, engrossed in my book, and a sun-shower passed by – somewhere along the line I’d just forgotten the feel of raindrops caressing my skin, and I felt so blessed in that moment that I could just stop and experience this.


So as I round out the week, I’m left with a feeling of profound gratitude, and the realisation that I am living what I have been coaching people all these many years: we control our destiny. We have the wonderful ability to choose – to make decisions about our life every single day.


A beautiful mindset…

What a crazy couple of weeks it’s been… work days are so full of tidying up/ organising that all I want to do at the end of each day (or week) is disappear from the world and hibernate… it may have something to do with the temperature, but it has everything to do with winding up at work! I’m looking forward to my first ‘down time’ in 6 years and have grand plans of doing wonderful things for a couple of weeks that I don’t normally get to do (yoga classes during the day, pottering around the art gallery and long walks to name a few) before I start a new adventure…

In the past couple of weeks it feels like everyone on social media seems to be jumping on the positivity bandwagon, and it’s a glorious thing.. long may it continue… I’ve been a firm believer for some time that what you focus on becomes your reality, so it’s just wonderful to see people being conscious of the power of their thought.

I have also been reminded that even if you are feeling incredibly positive and excited about a big event, your body will certainly let you know there’s a bit of stress with that process as well.. it’s all very well trudging along with a smile on your face, but during times of upheaval its more important than ever to listen to your body.. (which is probably part of the reason I have tended towards hibernation of late) and realise that little things like meditation, rest, exercise and good healthy eating become more important than ever.

I love this quote and this way of thinking – when I wake up each morning this way of approaching life gets me focussed in the right direction to face the day..